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How does the French adaptation, Le Chevalier du Labyrinthe, compare with Knightmare? See the 10 key differences.

The French adaptation is an interesting contrast with the original gameshow.

The similarities lie in the look and feel of the dungeon. Based on the much-loved Series 3 (1989), the hand-painted backdrops enchanted French viewers just as they did UK viewers.

The French version had a smaller cast (as few as five), thus a smaller range of characters. However, like Knightmare, most of the supporting cast played (or voiced) several characters.

The differences are in the gameplay. Quests lasted for a single episode. Each team had three 'lives' rather than one, making it a very different sort of game.

With multiple lives came greater difficulty. Despite the set-length quests, French knights would regularly encounter Level 3 challenges - some rarely seen in Knightmare!

See the 10 key differences below.

1. Extra lives

  • Knightmare: 'This is no game of numerous lives.' When the dungeoneer dies, the quest is over. A new team begins.
  • Chevalier: When the knight dies, he/she is replaced by one of the advisors. The team has three chances before the game is over.

2. Turning back

  • Knightmare: "The only way is onward. There is no turning back." Another famous rule - dungeoneers could not return the way they came.
  • Chevalier: Knights regularly left an encounter by returning in the same direction.

3. The set

  • Knightmare: Advisors sit around a viewing screen or look into a pool in the antechamber.
  • Chevalier: The advisors enter an antechamber but view the adventure from a balcony.

4. Levels

  • Knightmare: Split into three distinct levels of difficulty.
  • Chevalier: While wellway rooms were used, the quests did not extend to levels.

5. Prizes

  • Knightmare: Teams received a token rather than a prize: a "Symbol of Squiredom" or frightknight trophy.
  • Chevalier: Winners received a SEGA Master System and a Le Chevalier du Labyrinthe board game.

6. Music

  • Knightmare: Aside from short sequences with the Oracle, incidental music was only introduced for tension from Series 6 (1992).
  • Chevalier: Regular ambient music provided the ambience of a computer game.

7. Magic

  • Knightmare: Magic was cast and reversed by an advisor by spelling out the letters of the spell.
  • Chevalier: Knights evoked magic themselves by calling out the name of the spell (e.g. SESAME).

8. Continuity

  • Knightmare: Quests and gameplay were continued into subsequent episodes.
  • Chevalier: Self-contained gameplay. One quest per episode.

9. Seasonal

  • Knightmare: The programme was broadcast during the autumn for eight years.
  • Chevalier: The programme ran weekly for 12 months.

10. Winners

  • Knightmare: Very few winners (and none in Series 3, on which Chevalier is based).
  • Chevalier: Many winners. Sponsorship with Sega encouraged product placement, which came through victors.

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